Garmin Dash Cam 20

Garmin utilises its GPS technology in a new way
Required Spec Motor vehide
Having worked in the insurance industry. I’m well aware that determining blame in any accident can be less than straightforward. What complicates matters are the high number of drivers on the road who aren’t insured, and those who intend to profit from the daims handling systems by creating intentional accidents.

In those circumstances, it would be helpful if you could provide an independent view of events to support your story, and the Garmin Dash Cam 20 is designed to provide that for you.

The device is about the size of a large ring box, and is attached to the windscreen of your car using a sucker mount. The fixed focus lens can capture video in up to 1080p resolution and 30fps, along with still images, all of which are stored on to a Micro SD card. That can be 32GB, and a 4GB is included. When recording, the device uses inbuilt GPS technology to time and position stamp the location, providing further evidence about when and where an event took place. As the recordings are overwritten eventually, a motion detector in the Dash Cam 20 recognises a heavy breaking or impact event, and immediately tags that footage not to be erased.

Garmin Dash Cam 20

Exactly how long the recordings last is entirely dependent on what quality you use, and the size of the Micro SD. Using VGA quality and a 32GB card you could record 38.4 hours of travel, and the audio conversations in that vehicle. At the other end of that spectrum using 1080p and a 4GB card would loop the last 48 minutes.

Garmin provides cabling to connect the Dash Cam 20 to your PC, and also so that it can take power from a car socket. The advantage of using that power option is that the camera will automatically record when the ignition is turned, and shutdown when the engine stops.

You can charge the battery in the camera to avoid a dangling cable, but it then becomes your responsibility to turn the camera on and off, and recharge it. And, disappointingly the battery only lasts an hour.
Garmin Dash Cam 20
So is this worth it? Well, the problem here is that this device is mostly benefiting the insurance companies, but it’s you that’s paying for it. If, by installing this device you got a lower premium then it would be worth it, but only a few insurance companies are being that proactive. Typically a 10% discount is being offered for Dash Cams, but you’d need to make sure it was working in the event of a crash.

My other concern is that should someone intentionally crash into you to claim whiplash injury then notice this device, potentially exposing them to a criminal prosecution, they might react aggressively. What’s more, should you do something silly and cause an accident, the other driver might insist that you turn over the footage as evidence.

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It’s a shame that driving has come to this but, given the sums of money involved in automotive insurance these may become compulsory on UK roads in the next decade.
Garmin Dash Cam 20


Dimensions: 6.6cm x 8.21cm x 3.69cm Weight: 121 g Screen: 2.3″ TFT LCD Recording framerate: 30 FPS Battery life: up to 1 hour Storage: Can accommodate a MicroSD up to 32GB (Class 10 recommended), a 4GB card is included Also features: Incident detection (G-Sensor), GPS to locate events. Microphone to record cockpit audio

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